Contents Background Notes and the Design Challenge Site and Landscape Analysis and Guidelines Exterior Architecture Analysis and Guidelines Building Interiors Analysis and Guidelines Process and Implementation Guidelines Appendix 1 : Summary of the Guidelines Appendix 2: Additional Issues and Concerns Appendix 3: Charrette Agenda Appendix 4: Biographies of the Design Team and List of Participants in the Charrette New Life for a Campus Showing Signs of Age: Architectural and Landscape Design Guidelines FOR THE REVITALIZATION OF THE Social Security Administration Campus Headquarters WooDLAWN, Maryland Report of the Design Charrette Team November 2-3, 1994 Prepared for the General Services Administration and Social Security Administration Prepared by the Design Program of the National Endowment for the Arts Thomas Walton, Ph.D. Rapporteur School of Architecture and Planning The Catholic University of America Washington, DC Background Notes and the Design Challenge With a suburban corporate profile, the campus headquarters of the Social Securirv' Administra- tion (SSA) does not convey the typical image of a major federal office center. Located west of Baltimore in Woodlawn, Maryland, the com- plex is sited on 281 acres along Security Boule- vard and is hallmarked by dense woodland, expansive lawns, a relaxed collection of low- and high-rise buildings, and several vast parking lots. The property includes eleven government- owned structures. To the east, the Computer Center and Utility buildings are relatively new. However, most of the complex - notably the eight structures that are the architectural focus of this analysis: Altmeyer, Operations, the Annex, East High, East Low, West High, West Low and Supply - were constructed during the late- 1950s through the 1960s and 70s. Aestheti- cally, the Modern movement seems to have inspired the minimally articulated facades of brick, precast panels, and glass, as well as the massing of the entire headquarters that juxta- poses three- and four-story edifices with towers rising up to ten stories. Presently, more than 9,000 people work at the complex, and about 75 percent of them are automobile commuters. There is a small two- story garage located under the West High Rise building, but most of the parking is at grade with some forty acres of the Woodlawn site devoted to carparks and roads. Work hours are staggered. Some employees arrive as early as 6 am; most have gone home by 7 pm. The headquarters offers several amenities. There are two cafeterias with plans to open a third. The largest of these facilities (between the Altmeyer and Operations buildings) looks out on a landscaped court}'ard that serves as an outdoor "dining room" during the summer. There is a post office, credit union and several snack bars in the complex. Employees can, for a fee, join an on-site fitness center located in the Annex building, an option so popular that there is a waiting list for membership. And 20,000 square feet of space in the south end of the Operations building are devoted to two daycare centers, each having its own playground and serving 100 children. Shopping and addi- tional restaurants can be found in the blocks surrounding the campus. Clearly, there are many positive aspects to working at the Woodlawn campus. At the same time, the complex has, over the past several years, shown significant signs of aging. Deterio- ration of the facades is one of the most obvious problems. Walls on the Annex and Operations buildings, for example, are bowing in several places. (Indeed, this trend was so severe on the south facade of Operations that exterior rein- forcing was required to stabilize movement.) At a minimum, windows in East High and East Low need new caulking and gaskets. And throughout the complex, trapped moisture has caused exterior glazed brick to deteriorate and spall to the point where it will be necessary to replace this entire veneer. In addition, the time has come to upgrade various building systems. Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning are the top sources of worker complaints. Office partitions frequently restrict air flow. Spaces with southern exposure are often too warm while other areas are too cold. Asbestos abatement is necessary in several locations. Sprinkler and other fire safety systems 'NTERSTATE /-70 Site plan with main public entrance ojf Security Boulevard to the Altmeyer Building. Background Notes and the Design Challenge should be installed, and most divisions could use new lighting, ceilings, and floors as well as better workstations. Finally, there is room for improvement In less obvious arenas. The sense of entry and orientation are weak points. The network and hierarchy of roads is bewildering, particularly to vendors and visitors. Interiors, especially within Operations' vast footprint, are a confus- ing and anonymous maze of carrels. Pedestrian pathways and the transition from parking to office need further study. And although the landscaping is generally attractive, it could better complement building facades both aesthetically and environmentally, and site amenities, including sculpture, fountains, and the opportunities for recreation, could also be developed more effectively. Responding to these circumstances, the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) has outlined a 1 4-year plan to renovate the SSA campus. The earliest proposals involve East High and East Low, Operations, and the Annex. Prospectus Development Studies have been prepared for each of these buildings evalu- ating the scope of work and budget for various 20,000 square feet of space in the south end of the Operations building are devoted to two daycare centers, each having its own playground and serving 100 children. renovation alternatives. Current estimates are that the entire effort will be completed by 2007 at a cost of some $200 million. There is also an agreement with the employees union (which has about 6,800 SSA members) regarding the design of the new workstations that will be installed as renovations proceed. All those involved recognize the Woodlawn project as a major investment of federal resources. As the client for this undertaking, the Social Security Administration, an independent federal agency as of March 31, 1995 (previously SSA had been a unit within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services), wants to be sure that the outcome - both as individual elements and as a whole - reflects its mission: "To admin- ister national Social Security programs as pre- scribed by legislation, in an equitable, effective, efficient and caring manner." To this end, the design challenge is not only to address concerns related to individual buildings and site problems, but to develop a conception for the entire cam- pus that reinforces SSA's mission and identity, improves productivity, and provides a quality work environment for all employees. The design challenge is not only to address concerns related to individual buildings and site problems but to develop a conception for the entire campus that reinforces SSA's mission and identity, improves productivity, and provides a quality work environment for all employees. The Charrette Response and Project Objectives In essence, what was needed was a larger view - a set of recommendations that would establish parameters for an SSA campus master plan while simultaneously informing the design of separate phases of the project. The GSA also felt this broad perspective should include fresh insights and counsel from outside professionals. To this end, the agency sought advice from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Design Program as to the best course of action. At this juncture, Thomas Grooms, program manager of NEA's Federal Design Improvement Program (an initiative that since 1972 has stressed and facilitated the focus on quality for the largest design client in the world - the U.S. government), recommended convening a "charrette." (Charrette comes from a French phrase describing the hectic rush of students at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts to complete their architectural drawings and put their boards on the cart, en charrette, as they were being col- lected for entry to various competitions. Today, the term refers to a thorough study of any par- ticular design problem within a limited time frame.) From their experience with past coop- erative undertakings, Grooms and the GSA knew that the outcome from the charrette would accomplish two key objectives. First, it would focus attention on and generate enthu- siasm for the project, opening up a valuable dialogue among GSA and SSA employees and upper management. Second, it would provide a design vision for the campus - not a final proposal nor a design mandate, but a rich set of guidelines from the charrette design team that the GSA and SSA could accept, modify or reject as they continued to develop the project further. Things started to happen quickly once SSA agreed to the charrette strategy. November 2-3, 1994 were chosen as the dates for the event, and a multi-disciplinary team was invited to participate in the two-day meeting/workshop. Jim Olson, a principal of Olson Sundberg Architects, and distinguished Seattle architect dedicated to developing environmentally sensi- tive design strategies, was selected to head the team. His associates were landscape architect and architect Everett Fly, head of E.L. Fly & Associates, a San Antonio firm with expertise that includes planning and urban design as well as landscape architecture and architecture; Jeffrey Getty, a design architect with significant experience related to federal projects and a specialist in technical facilities for Hennington, Durham & Richardson in Alexandria, Virginia; John Clancy, former chairman of the Brookline Redevelopment Authority and a principal of Goody, Clancy & Associates, a Boston architec- ture and urban planning office; and Gregory Tung, a partner in Freedman Tung & Bottomley, an urban design and town planning firm in San Francisco that focuses on downtown and neigh- borhood revitalization and the development of public spaces and landmarks. Helping to articu- late the goals and facts related to the renovation program, SSA invited several of their Architec- tural & Engineering Branch staff to participate Entrances to the building should receive special attention. The Charrette Response and project Objectives in the charrette, and the GSA had both Mid- Atlantic regional and central office managers at the meeting. SSA employee representatives were also asked to share their concerns and interests. (See Appendix 4 for a list of these additional charrette participants.) When this diverse group of experts gathered in a SSA headquarters conference room in early November, they had a full agenda. Much of the first day was devoted to becoming familiar with the issues and scope of the project. There was a presentation on the history of the complex and the proposed renovations. There was a bus and walking tour of the site. There was a round- robin discussion where all those present voiced what they believed were critical problems and goals. And there was a preliminary presentation in the afternoon where the design team and other participants divided themselves into three groups, each of which outlined a variety of general themes and design strategies related to landscape, architecture, interior design, human scale, art, image, ecology, technical systems, transportation, movement, and wayfinding. As a result of these activities and the dialogue they generated, a consensus emerged regarding the objectives the team would use to shape the charrette guidelines, principles they also hoped would influence a future master plan and the development of detailed renovation proposals. Specifically, the first priority was: Think Big! The design team confirmed the perspective of many at GSA and SSA that the $200 million renovation was not only a major investment, but in addition, a golden opportunity to estab- lish the campus as a model federal office com- plex. In dealing with clearly defined, and some- times limited, functional and technical issues, the agencies and the designers were admonished to make sure their solutions were inspired by and complemented a larger vision. The goal should be to create a meaningful identity for the Social Security Administration, enhancing the workplace and human environment, and reinforcing qualities that would distinguish Woodlawn as a special place. The goals should be to create a meaningful identity that enhances the workplace and human environment. Based on this premise, the remaining project goals were divided into two categories: Image - the notion that renovations should reflect the mission, values and philosophy of SSA; and Humanism - the belief that changes should benefit both employees and the environment. Key components within each ol these objectives can be summarized in these terms: Image The renovated facilities should be supportive and accessible. When Americans think of Social Security, "benefits ' and "services" are the words that commonly come to mind. The system is an intimate part of the lives of the vast majority of retirees, older persons, workers, the disabled, and their families in the United States. In this sense, changes at the SSA headquarters should convey the sense that the agency understands the major role it plays in our society and is open and ready to help its constituents. The RENOVATED FACILITIES SHOULD SUGGEST THE IMPORTANCE OF COMMUNITY. Social Security speaks to the lives of all groups of Americans. It also, because of its critical importance to older people, can help redefine and nurture stable and safe ideas of community that address the unique needs of these individu- als and their relationships with younger Ameri- cans. The renovated facilities should feature cultural and educational displays related to ssa. Obviously, the complex must be functional, but those responsible for the renovation should make sure that the buildings and landscape also capture the heart and soul of the agency. This can be done using such media as exhibits, videos, inscriptions, art, and memorials that describe how SSA and its staff touch and en- hance the lives of so- many ordinary workers. The renovated facilities should HAVE A civic PRESENCE. SSA is not a speculative development or a private corporation. It is a public institution and the redesign of the complex should reflect this public dimension including a sense of pride, dignity, timelessness, and permanence. The renovated facilities should instill trust. The SSA headquarters should appear enduring without seeming inhuman. The buildings should embody images of competence, practi- cality, and fiscal responsibility. The Charrette Response and Project Objectives Humanism The renovated facilities should have A human scale, evoke a sense of place, AND BE AN ATTRACTIVE PLACE TO WORK. While a rich and thoughtfully crafted image is a crucial component of the SSA project, this objective must not overwhelm the needs oi individual employees. Design changes at the complex should create an inviting human envi- ronment affecting a spectrum of priorities from how pedestrians move from cars to buildings to the detailing and lighting of corridors and workstations. People should enjoy working at the SSA headquarters, and landscape, architec- ture, interior design and the inclusion of art- work should promote satisfaction, loyalty, and productivity of the workplace. The renovated facilities should be a healthy place to work. Safety, ventilation, lighting, and the health hazards of various building materials should be of prime concern to those involved in the renovation. SSA should be a model of a healthy workplace. The renovated facilities should be flexible. Change is constant in contemporary society and to the degree that this has an impact on SSA's activities, the buildings and interior com- ponents should be responsive to new arrange- ments without compromising the integrity and quality of the design. The renovated facilities should be A good neighbor at a local, national, AND EVEN GLOBAL SCALE. SSA must strike a balance between security and the desire to be a good neighbor. As the com- plex is updated, there is a chance to further improve relationships with the surrounding community. This may involve better access to the site and certain public spaces, h may simply be to make the complex a more visually mean- ingful and powerful landmark. Whatever the final strategy, SSA should be a national demon- stration of the benefits of a well-designed fed- eral-local relationship. At a global level, the SSA campus is a good neighbor if it minimizes the waste of precious resources and enhances the human and natural environments. The RENOVATED FACILITIES SHOULD BE AN EXAMPLE OF CONSERVATION AND SUSTAINABLE DESIGN. As we enter the twenty-first century, these are central concerns. The renovation process itself should recycle as many materials as possible. The redesign of buildings and site should involve the selection of materials based on life-cycle costs; reduction in the consumption of energy, water and other natural resources; avoidance of the use of hazardous substances; and encouragement of decision-making and work patterns that take environmental impact into account. 10 Once these overall objectives were clearly de- fined, the charrette team continued its analysis and prepared precise design guidelines and recommendations in four specific areas: I Site and Landscape I Exterior Architecture I Building Interiors I Process and Implementation In the pages that follow, these are the headings for outlining the guidelines and related discus- sion. It should be noted that in the first three categories, the team prefaced its presentation of guidelines by identifying positive dimensions and missed opportunities of the existing SSA campus and the goals related to that particular design topic. It should also be noted that those participating in the charrette, including SSA and GSA representatives, articulated several issues that did not fit neatly into the organiza- tional framework just described. The team wanted to record these ideas as well so they are listed in Appendix 2 of this report. "Our goal was to create a vision that is strong, compelling, and will project into the future, carrying the mission of THE SSA." —Jim Olson 11 Site and Landscape Analysis and Guidelines On The Positive Side The charrette team recognized that the existing landscape is valued and appreciated by its users. The abundance of mature trees and other land- scape features, the changes in topography, the curvilinear roads and paths, the informal pat- terns and places throughout the site, and sim- ply the quantity of green space were highlighted as important virtues of the campus. The main cafeteria courtyard and the undeveloped wood- land were singled out as panicularly inviting. Missed Opportunities The team also pointed out several problems. In general, trees were not close enough to buildings to buffer unpleasant views, noise and wind, or shade the south facades of the complex and the children's playgrounds. Roads and trees were not coordinated as elements to help estab- lish a welcoming entrance and clarify orienta- tion to the many buildings and functions within the campus. Parking lots overwhelmed a major portion of the site and had poor pedestrian access. There was little in the way of outdoor shelters for smokers and those waiting for public transportation. Building and site entry features were difficult to discern. The landscape did not help convey the notion of the head- quarters as a "good neighbor. " And the site demonstrated neither the principles of ecologi- cal and sustainable development nor the federal government's stewardship of natural and human-made resources. GOALS I "Environmental humanism" should be the theme for site and landscape modifications, setting an example of environmental, social, and fiscal responsibility. I The site and landscape should be redesigned to support and express SSA's mission and its commitment to quality. I The natural beauty of the campus should be maintained and enhanced for the benefit of both staff and visitors. Guidelines Natural systems should be the basis of ssa campus site planning. The natural setting of this complex is one of its greatest but underutilized assets. The careful contouring of land can significantly improve storm runoff and snow banking. Trees can provide windbreaks and shading. The appropri- ate orientation and detailing of facades can bring in direct and reflected light while mini- mizing solar gain. This strategy can also have a positive impact on the bottom line, for over the long-term, "It is," as one team member said, "always cheaper to work with nature than to conquer it (or ignore it)." In general, landscaping should focus on native species and low-maintenance design. Cultivating a variety of native species will im- prove the health and sustainability of the green spaces. Stressing low-maintenance plants, such as grasses and perennial flowers, will minimize staff and upkeep expenses without sacrificing quality. "Given that there is so much nature on the site, there is an opportunity to bring nature closer to the people." — Greg Tung 12 Security Boulevard, the headquarters' front lawn, needs a landscape plan to "civilize" this critical edge of the site. Presently, this area is unused and lacks distinc- tion. Perhaps SSA should initiate a campaign to plant trees along the strip to help make this major route a true boulevard. The entry treat- ment in terms of landscaping, signage, markers, and even roadways should also be redesigned, making it clear that the Altmeyer building is the front door of the complex. New SITE SIGNAGE AND LIGHTING SYSTEMS SHOULD BE DEVELOPED. The existing signs are difficult to read and of no help to newcomers in understanding and getting around the campus. A new system should solve these problems and be coordinated with a building and interior signage strategy. Exterior lighting also has to be upgraded, both to enhance and improve the safety of pedestrian movement, and to highlight key landscape and architectural features of the complex. II • •• #••••••••••• the site features in front of the Altmeyer building should be redeveloped to make that facade a more prominent element of the campus. Tree planting should support and frame the facade, and the relatively narrow visitor drive- way should be given greater emphasis with elements such as trees and street lamps The bus LOOP courtyard should BE redesigned TO CLARIFY THE MANY functions coming OFF THAT SPACE. This area is a confusing mix of building en- trances, a bus stop, a smoking area, bicycle parking and other activities. The design should establish a clear hierarchy of uses, help orient people to buildings accessible from this node, and provide a human-scaled and attractive environment for the many individuals using the space. Suggested landscaping shown in dark green. 13 Site and Landscape Analysis and Guidelines The south-facing courtyard between Annex and Operations should be devel- oped AS A MORE DYNAMIC CAMPUS SPACE. At the moment, this centrally located paved courtyard space is underutilized. Perhaps it should be covered over as a winter garden. Perhaps major portions of the paving should be replaced with plants and special landscape ele- ments. Whatever the particular approach, the goal should be to create a unique and lively open space for employees. The PEDESTRIAN AND PLAYGROUND STRIP ALONG THE SOUTH FACE OF OPERATIONS SHOULD BE WIDENED AND PLANTED WITH ADDITIONAL TREES AS A VISUAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL BUFFER FOR THE DAYCARE CENTER AND THE BUILDING. This would create a green zone between the playgrounds and the parking lots, improve views from the building, and reduce heat gain during the summer. The east face of Operations also needs to be buffered from the parking. Perhaps a formal promenade or other type of linear scheme could be developed along this edge to establish some breathing room between the cars and the building. The amount of land devoted to parking should be reduced. As a model of conservation and sustainable design, SSA needs to evaluate its parking policy and adopt standards that, with thorough analy- sis and employee input, encourage car pooling and the use of public transit. This would permit the agency to landscape areas currently filled with automobiles and ameliorate the image of the south section of the campus as a sea of cars. The existing parking lots should BE RELANDSCAPED. Trees might be arranged to give the impression of "orchard parking." This would reduce heat and shade automobiles. In addition, snow stor- age areas should be integrated within the new design so plowing does not block pedestrian paths through the lots and around buildings. 'o»2a^t2t> Trees might be arranged to give the impression of "orchard parking. " This would reduce heat and shade automobiles. 14 Trees could contribute to cooling summers and warming winters. Covered walkways should be designed between the buildings and the parking. Developed in conjunction with landscaping, these walkways could break up the vast scale of the lots, reinforce employee entrances to the complex, and help humanize one of the least attractive aspects of the campus. SEPARATE PAVILIONS SHOULD BE CONSTRUCTED FOR BUS RIDERS AND SMOKERS. Both groups are important users of spaces near entrances. Waiting areas should be designed to encourage public transit commuting, and the smoking spaces should be located at appropri- ate distances from entrances to avoid conflict with non-smokers. Both kinds of structures should be coordinated with other architectural and landscape improvements. Rooftop mechanical equipment screens should become a design feature. These are enormous structures visible from a distance. Rather than big boxes, they should be architectural elements that amplify the identity of the campus and its several buildings. CONTROLLED COMMUNITY ACCESS TO THE SITE SHOULD BE ENCOURAGED. This might be limited to specific areas and uses. The woodland might be developed as a nature preserve and other recreational opportunities could certainly be developed within the 281- acre complex. The site should be enhanced with artwork and sculpture. This could be related to SSA's identity and mission. Commissions could support local artists. And installations could help provide links between the architecture and the sur- rounding landscape. A BUDGET LINE SHOULD BE CREATED TO MAINTAIN ALL LANDSCAPE AND SITE IMPROVEMENTS. Designs can be developed to keep staff, upkeep and supply costs to a minimum, but some resources will be necessary to maintain the kinds of improvements outlined in these guide- lines. Proposals, then, should be analyzed from a life-cycle perspective and accompanied with an estimate of maintenance expenses. 15 Exterior Architecture Analysis and Guidelines On The Positive Side The charretce team praised the wonderful site as well as the capable handling of building massing and heights within the campus. They also noted that the courtyards, bridges, and other links among elements of the complex presented valuable design opportunities. Missed Opportunities On the negative side, the team pointed out the lack of a distinguished headquarters entrance, a poor system of entrances in all the campus facilities, the monotony of the facades in terms of color, rhythm and detail, and the failure of brick and other materials problems as the major architectural challenges. Goals I The renovation should transform and strengthen the SSA image. I Architectural changes should establish a more human scale and character. I Any new designs should accommodate change and advances in technology. Guidelines Within a certain range of design concepts AND palette of MATERIALS, VARIETY SHOULD BE A KEY ASPECT OF THE NEW FENESTRATION TREATMENT. The facades should replace the current "strip window" motif with a selected variety of open- ings based on such factors as orientation to the sun and vistas, the expression of interior func- tions including team work areas and other special uses, and the need to create hierarchy among the buildings and facade elements in general. Brick should be the basic material for THE facades in COMBINATION WITH STONE OR precast CONCRETE ACCENTS. Brick is a rich and warm material that can help create an appropriate civic image for SSA. It can express the quality of permanence. If detailed well, it can also enhance the human scale of the design. It is economical. It comes in a broad range of colors, textures, and sizes, and can be arranged in patterns and/or struc- tural motifs. On a pragmatic level, two other advantages related to this choice are that the SSA buildings are already designed to accept a brick facade and that local tradespeople have ample experience with brick construction. The facades should incorporate devices SUCH as sunscreens, light shelves, canopies, and loggias to create a more identifiable human scale and a sense of layering. Obviously, these items can also add interest to the fenestration and, in some cases, act as energy-saving features. "The building facades should represent the IMAG! OF the SSA BY showing BOTH solidity and humanity." —John Clancy 16 Bridges, links between buildings, courtyards, and large expanses of solid wall should all be treated as distinctive facade events, perhaps highlighted with unique materials and forms. The facades should incorporate devices such as sunscreens, light shelves, canopies, and loggias to create a more identifiable scale and sense of layering. 17 Covered walkways could help mitigate the effect of the existing "sea of parking. " 18 The exterior skin should be energy efficient, durable, easy to maintain, and cost effective. These should be considered minimum stan- dards, quahries that should be reflected in every design proposal. Moreover, life cycle cost analyses should be part of evaluating these criteria. Another issue is to assess how the facades should be modified in response to new functions and technologies. Entrances to the buildings should RECEIVE special ATTENTION. These are among the weakest points in the existing design. The Altmeyer building is the main public gateway to the complex, yet it is approached from the side of a narrow road. Architecturally, this needs to be dramatically improved. The procession to this entrance, its scale, and its details should all work together to let visitors and employees know this is the front door of the SSA headquarters. Other staff and service entrances also need to be defined as secondary but nonetheless self-evident path- ways into the buildings. Bridges, links between buildings, courtyards, and large expanses of solid wall should all be treated as distinctive facade events, perhaps highlighted with unique materials and forms. These are places where the facades can break from the pattern, interjecting an "irrational" element in the otherwise relentlessly rational ensemble of large scale buildings. In addition to brick and stone or precast concrete, metal and glass might be used at these junctures. Passageways might be characterized by other- wise unexpected shapes and details, adding visual energ}' to key points in the complex and helping to call out entrances and other note- worthy functions. Large windowless walls might be decorated with artwork or murals. As RENOVATION PLANS PROCEED, EXISTING MATERIALS SHOULD BE RECYCLED WHEN POSSIBLE, AND NEW FACADES SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO USE RECYCLABLE MATERIALS. This enhances the image of SSA as a wise custodian of resources, reducing contributions to the waste stream while making the agency headquarters a model of sustainable design. Large windowless walls might be decorated with artwork or murals. 19 Building Interiors Analysis and Guidelines On The Positive Side From the perspective of interiors, four aspects of the SSA headquarters impressed the charrette team. First, the structure of the buildings was sound. Second, floor-to-floor heights were generous, a fact that provides adequate space for the mechanical systems and allows designers to suggest a variety of interior layouts. Third, there seemed to be adequate access to the many spaces in the complex. And finally, the mix of building types and floor plates should yield flexibility in responding to current needs and future changes. Missed Opportunities In this arena, the team emphasized the lack of identity and clarity in organizing SSA func- tions. It commented on cavernous interior layouts without any natural light. It felt there was little effort to visually link interiors with exterior spaces and other site assets. There were few, if any, team spaces in an era when team- work is becoming the norm. The existing heat- ing and cooling systems were deemed inad- equate. Access for persons with disabilities was cumbersome and unattractive. And interior finishes were generally budget friendly but ineffective in creating a human scale, people- oriented work environment. GOALS I Make it easier to navigate and understand the buildings. I Humanize the work areas. I Maximize the efficiency and individual control of the engineered systems including lighting, heating and cooling. Guidelines The renovations should enhance and clarify entries and lobbies. The movement from outside spaces to various interior divisions is confusing and circuitous. Exterior orientation needs to be improved. Lobbies, without compromising security, should welcome employees and visitors with human scaled details and finishes. And once inside, it should be much easier to distinguish the paths to different functions in the complex. New interior layouts should have A self-evident hierarchy of work spaces AND circulation. Presently, major and minor corridors are a maze with incoherent circulation patterns and vistas lacking focal points. It is easy to get lost. There is little that modulates the rhythm of spaces, and any one cluster of workstations looks very much like all the others. Designers should cre- ate an easily understood hierarchy of pathways (i.e., "freeways," "boulevards," and "streets") through buildings. They should interrupt long vistas with uniquely designed team and open spaces, the introduction of daylighting, or changes in finishes. In certain areas, corridors might end with full height windows, naturally lit team rooms or vistas into the site to keep users better oriented. "Let's try to humanize the workplace. There's a lot oi space, and it is very easy tc feel lost. We'd like to mak IT productive and healthy." -Jeff Getty 20 A SIGNAGE SYSTEM SHOULD BE DESIGNED TO SUPPORT THE CIRCULATION CONCEPT. This should be coordinated with, and become an extension of, site signage. It should be easily understood and appear consistently throughout the campus in lobbies, at major nodes and points of vertical circulation. It should also be inexpensive and easy to modify as functions move and other changes occur in the complex. The scale of work areas in buildings with large floor plates, such as operations AND THE Annex, needs to be humanized. There should be an easily understood pattern of workstation clusters separated by such things as team spaces, break areas, or different kinds of lighting. Various functions should be identi- fied with changes in materials, colors, textures, and/or the arrangement of workstations. High use pathways should end with views into the site. Finishes should be warm and inviting. The height and placement of partitions should maximize shared daylighting. AK t The scale of work areas in buildings with large floor plates needs to be humanized. There should be an easily understood pattern of workstation clusters. . . The relationships between interior SPACES and the site SHOULD BE GREATLY IMPROVED. As noted earlier, important corridors should end with vistas across the campus. In addition, however, new interior layouts might include a shift in priorities that puts team, meeting, and group spaces rather than individual ofFices along building perimeters. The height of parti- tions should also be limited along exterior walls or clear/translucent panels should be used so that those working in interior spaces have some visual contact with the exterior. Daylighting should be available to as many offices as possible. Beyond the strategies just mentioned, a response to this guideline might also include opening up the interior of a building like Operations with atria, lightwells, and skylights. Perhaps this could be done at the escalator core and other major circulation points. And because of the relatively generous floor-to-floor heights, light shelves could also be used to share reflected light with interior spaces. 21 Building Interiors Analysis and Guidelines Daylighting should be available to as many offices as possible. This might include opening up the interior of a building like Operations with atria, lightwells, and skylights. New interior layouts might include a shift in priorities that puts team, meeting, and group spaces rather than individual offices along building perimeters. Passageways might be characterized by unexpected shapes and details, adding visual energy to key points in the complex and helping call out entrances. 22 Finishes, in addition to contributing to the human scale of the complex, should also be safe, non-toxic, durable, permanent, and cost effective. As part of a larger master plan, a palette of materials that meet these criteria should be selected by SSA and its design team, and then this should be used by various project architects throughout the renovation process. One inter- esting possibility is that brick and brick details might be used on the interior as well as the exterior of the buildings. FLEXIBILITY SHOULD BE A HIGH PRIORITY IN THE RENOVATION EFFORT. In the workplace today, change is the norm. There is no doubt that in the decades to come SSA will need to modify and reconfigure its work areas several times. In this context, flex- ibility should be a fundamental principle guid- ing the design and installation of all systems. This will allow SSA to respond more effectively and more efficiently to a broad spectrum of future needs. The LIGHTING DESIGN SHOULD BE BOTH FLEXIBLE AND EFFICIENT. It should be easy to rewire, move or install new fixtures when necessary. Daylighting should be used as much as possible. Glare should be mini- mized. And employees should have task lights available in their workstations. The new HVAC system should facilitate frequent air changes and give employees significant control over temperatures and air flow in their own work and meeting areas. This is necessary not only to satisfy individual preferences, but also because buildings are affected by different functional and climatic conditions. Southern facades, for instance, absorb heat while northern facades receive no direct sunlight. Certain interior areas have to contend with heat generated by computers and other machinery while there might be little impact from equipment in other spaces. The HVAC, in response to human comfort require- ments as well as recent regulations, should permit users to fine tune the system to meet a diversity of environmental situations. A WIRE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM SHOULD BE CAREFULLY DESIGNED AND MAINTAINED. Complex telephone, electric, and network wir- ing are a reality in today's workplace. Space planners need to come up with a strategy to handle all these links in ways that are flexible, safe, and unobtrusive. Without advanced planning - including identification and removal of all abandoned wiring - this aspect of office design can quickly get out of control, increasing frustration and reducing productivity. Existing heating and cooling systems were deemed inadequate. 23 Process and Implementation Guidelines The charrette team presented three guideHnes as strategies that would help assure the highest quality design outcomes. Scopes of work for all future projects ON the site should direct the A/E's to consult this charrette report and ensure THAT each of THE CONCERNS MENTIONED IN THE Summary of Guidelines is addressed. In addition to referring to the master plan dis- cussed below, this will help assure continuity of the decision-making and design processes, and provide a consensus regarding objectives in a renovation program that will take more than a decade to complete. A master plan needs TO BE DEVELOPED FOR THE ENTIRE SSA RENOVATION PROJECT INCLUDING SPECIFIC RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SITE AND LANDSCAPING IMPROVEMENTS; BUILDING FACADES AND ARCHITECTURAL vocabulary; and interior design STRATEGIES AND FINISHES. Because of the duration of this major effort, a master plan should be developed as soon as possible. This will put individual projects in a larger context, establish clear priorities, and create a common palette of landscape, architec- ture, and interior design features that different design teams can use over time with some as- surance that the overall unity of the campus will not be jeopardized. The MASTER PLANNING TEAM AND DESIGNERS FOR INDIVIDUAL FACETS OF THE RENOVATION SHOULD BE MULTIDISCIPLINARY AND INCLUDE EXPERTISE IN LANDSCAPE, ARCHITECTURE, OFFICE DESIGN, ENVIRONMENTAL GRAPHIC DESIGN, AND PUBLIC ART. It should be clear that the challenges involved in this endeavor go beyond the abilities of most architects and interior designers. The recom- mended blend of talent, then, while requiring more organization and coordination, with help assure optimum results for the S200 million ultimately invested in this undertaking. The MASTER PLAN AND PROJECT DESIGN PROCESSES SHOULD INCLUDE OPPORTUNITIES FOR EMPLOYEE INPUT AND REACTION. This vests staff in the changes and often uncov- ers nuances, insights, and worker priorities that might otherwise be overlooked. 24 SSA Mission "to administer national Social Security programs as prescribed by legislation, in an equitable. effective, efficient and caring manner." 25 Appendix 1 : Summary of the Guidelines Project Objective I Think Big! Project Objectives - Image I The renovated faciUties should be supportive and accessible. I The renovated facilities should suggest the importance of community. I The renovated facilities should feature cultural and educational displays related to SSA. I The renovated facilities should have a civic presence. I The renovated facilities should instill trust. Project Objectives - Humanism I The renovated facilities should have a human scale, evoke a sense of place, and be an attractive place to work. I The renovated facilities should be a healthy place to work. I The renovated facilities should be flexible. I The renovated facilities should be a good neighbor at a local, national, and even global scale. I The renovated facilities should be an example of conservation and sustainable design. Site and Landscape Guidelines I Natural systems should be the basis of SSA campus site planning. I In general, landscaping should focus on native species and low-maintenance design. I Security Boulevard, the headquarters' front lawn, needs a landscape plan to "civilize" this critical edge of the site. I New site signage and light- ing systems should be devel- oped. I The site features in front of the Altmeyer building should be redeveloped to make that facade a more prominent ele- ment of the campus. I The bus loop courtyard should be redesigned to clarify the many functions coming off that space. I The south-facing courtyard between Annex and Opera- tions should be developed as a more dynamic campus space. I The pedestrian and play- ground strip along the south face of Operations should be widened and planted with additional trees as a visual and environmental buffer for the daycare center and the build- ing. I The east face of Operations also needs to be buffered from the parking. I The amount of land devoted to parking should be reduced. I The existing parking lots should be relandscaped. I Covered walkways should be designed between the buildings and the parking. I Separate pavilions should be constructed for bus riders and smokers. I Rooftop mechanical equip- ment screens should become design feature. I Controlled community access to the site should be encouraged. I The site should be enhance with artwork and sculpture. I A budget line should be created to maintain all land- scape and site improvements Exterior Architecture Guidelines I Within a certain range of design concepts and palette c materials, variety should be a key aspect of the new fenestr tion treatment. I Brick should be the basic material for the facades in combination with stone and precast concrete accents. I The facades should incorpc rate devices such as sunscreer light shelves, canopies, and loggias to create a more idem fiable scale and a sense of layering. 26 I The exterior skin should be energy efficient, durable, easy to maintain, and cost effective. I Entrances to the buildings should receive special atten- tion. I Bridges, links between build- ings, courtyards, and large expanses of solid wall should all be treated as distinctive facade events, perhaps high- lighted with unique materials and forms. I As renovation plans proceed, existing materials should be recycled when possible, and new facades should be required to use recyclable materials. Building Interiors Guidelines I The renovations should enhance and clarify entries and lobbies. I New interior layouts should have a self-evident hierarchy of work spaces and circulation. I A signage system should be designed to support the circu- lation concept. I The scale of work areas in buildings with large floor plates, such as Operations and the Annex, needs to be humanized. I The relationships between interior spaces and the site should be greatly improved. I Daylighting should be available to as many offices as possible. I Finishes, in addition to contributing to the human scale of the complex, should also be safe, nontoxic, durable, permanent, and cost effective. I Flexibility should be a high priority in the renovation effort. I The lighting design should be both flexible and efficient. I The new HVAC system should facilitate frequent air changes and give employees significant control over tem- peratures and air flow in their own work and meeting areas. I A wire management system should be carefully designed and maintained. Process and Implementa- tion Guidelines I Scopes of work for all future projects on the site should direct the A/E's to consult this charrette report and ensure that each of,the concerns men- tioned in the Summary of Guidelines is addressed. I A master plan needs to be developed for the entire SSA renovation project including specific recommendations for site and landscaping improve- ments; building facades and architectural vocabulary; and interior design strategies and finishes. I The master planning team and designers for individual facets of the renovation should be multidisciplinary and in- clude expertise in landscape, architecture, office design, environmental graphic design, and public art. I The master plan and project design processes should in- clude opportunities for em- ployee input and reaction. 27 Appendix 2: Additional Issues and Concerns Those participating in the charrette, including SSA and GSA representatives, articulated sev- eral ideas that did not neatK' fit into the frame- work for the design guidehnes. These additional thoughts and comments are recorded here with- out any particular order or priorit)'. Move the line of security deeper into the buildings to permit greater community access to facilities. Build an interactive SSA museum to educate the public concerning the agency's history and mission and develop better community relations. Sponsor art and performance programs as well as exhibitions by local schools. "There are potential opportunities to use portions of the landscape as a resource to enhance community relations." — Everett Fly Expand the fitness center to accept those currently on the waiting list and use extra membership funds to support and improve the daycare centers. create humane smokers areas. SPONSOR A WILDLIFE SANCTUARY 28 Appendix 3: Charrette Agenda Wednesday, 2 November 1 994 8:45 Welcotne Thomas Grooms Design Program, NEA Barbara Sledge Associate Commissioner, Office of Facilities Management, SSA Rob Hewell Director, Portfolio Management, GSA 9:00 Background of the \Voo(ilaw>i Co)>iplex and the Modernization Projects John Bernet Woodlawn Branch Chief, GSA 1 0:00 Tour of the Facility George Powell Chief Headquarters Project Management Section, SSA 12:00 Lunch 1:00 Presentation by SSA Union Representatives Earl HoUenbaugh and Ken Smith Representing AFGE Local 1923 Union 2:00 Charrette Convenes — Discussion of Issues, Agenda and Format 5:30 Adjourn Thursday, 3 November 1994 8:45 Reconvene Charrette 1 :00 Charrette Discussions 3:00 Wrap-Up and Preparation for Presentatio)i 4:00 Summary of Design Guideli>ics Attending: Kenneth Kimbrough Commissioner, Public Buildings Service, GSA Jan Ziegler Assistant Regional Administrator, Public Buildings Service, GSA John Dyer Deputy Commissioner for Finance, Assessment & Management, SSA Dale Sopper Assistant Deputy C'ommissioner for Finance, SSA Barbara Sledge Associate Commissioner, Office of Facilities Management, SSA Gary Arnold Deputy Associate Commissioner, Office of Facilities Management, SSA 5:30 Adjourn 29 Appendix 4: Biographies of the Design Team The Design Team Everett L. Fly (San Antonio, TX) Everett Fly is principal of E.L. Fly & Associates Inc. /Planning, Landscape Architecture and Architecture, former Assistant Professor of Architecture at the University of Texas at Austin, and Visiting Lecturer in the Department of Architecture at the University of California at Berkeley. He has lectured extensively at major conferences, workshops, and seminars through- out the country. He is author of "Black Settle- ments in America," a section in The Yearbook of Landscape Architecture: Historic American Buildings from Airports to Zoos. He is a member of the American Societ)' of Landscape Archi- tects and a former member of the Texas Board of Review for the National Register of Historic Places. Mr. Fly practices as a registered land- scape architect (Texas, California, Georgia, Alabama and Florida) and a registered architect (Texas, California, Florida). He is licensed in Texas as a professional irrigator. He has been responsible for more than 100 planning, design and construction projects, ranging from less than an acre to entire urban districts. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Landscape Architecture from Harvard University. In Sep- tember 1994, President Bill Clinton appointed Mr. Fly to the 32-member President's Commit- tee on the Arts and the Humanities. Jeffrey Getty (Alexandria, VA) Jeffrey Getty is a senior architect and Vice Presi- dent of Hennington, Durham & Richardson, Inc. (HDR), and Principal of HDR's Interior Architecture program. He is an award winning designer who has been responsible for a wide range of large scale and technically challenging facilities in the United States and abroad. Mr. Gett\''s client experience includes IBM, The Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), Xerox, The Washington Post, and a number of prominent health care provid- ers such as Kaiser Permanente. In addition, he has served as a key participant in a host of projects for the federal government including work for the General Services Administration and the Department of Defense. Mr. Getty also served as a senior design architect with the Washington office of John Carl Warecke & Associates and managed his own practice for several years. He holds Bachelor of Architecture and Master of Architecture degrees from the University of Virginia, where he received the AIA School Medal in 1976. He is a licensed professional architect in Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. John Clancy (Boston, MA) John Clancy is a principal of Goody, Clancy & Associates, an architecture and urban planning firm in Boston. He is former chairman of the Brookline Redevelopment Authority' and has been a visiting lecturer and critic at Harvard Universitv and the Massachusetts Institute of 30 Technology. Mr. Clancy's works have received numerous awards and include Tent City, Massachusetts Transportation Building, and Langham Court in Boston; Austin Hall and DeWolfe Street Housing for Harvard Univer- sity; MBTA Davis Square Subway Station, Somerville, MA; and WoodRidge Homes, North Andover, MA. Mr. Clancy is a Fellow of the American Institute oi Architects. He holds a Bachelor ol Art from the University of Califor- nia, Berkeley, and a Bachelor of Architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Jim Olson, Charrette Team Chair (Seattle, WA) In 1970, Jim Olson founded the architectural firm which became Olson Sundberg Architects in 1985. As principal, he has been responsible for such projects as the Washington State Capi- tol Museum and the Overlake Park Presbyterian Church, which received a 1990 American Insti- tute of Architects Seattle Chapter Honor Award. He was an associate architect with Robert Ven- turi on the Seattle Art Museum and is currently working with Moore/Andersson Architects on the Washington State History Museum. Mr. Olson has a special interest and dedication to environmentally sensitive, sustainable design. Under his direction an ecology group has been formed to evaluate environmentally responsible design. His honors include: the Seattle Art Award for Architecture from the Seattle Arts Commission; First Place in the Seattle AlA "Museum in the City" Competition; and "Best Architect" from Seattle Magazine, 1985. Mr. Olson is a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and was featured in Architectural Digest's "100 Architects," an international guide to the world's leading architects. He is a past board member ol the University of Washington Henry Art Gallery, the Center on Contempo- rary Art, and Artist's Trust. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Washington. Gregory Tung (San Francisco, CA) Gregory Tung is a partner of Freedman Tung and Bottomley, which specializes in downtown and neighborhood revitalization plans, develop- ment master plans, design guidelines, and designs for public spaces and landmarks. Some of the firm's projects include a main street rede- sign and downtown revitalization strategy for Mountain View, California; a gateway arch, street improvements and a revitalization strategy for the North Area of San Leandro, California; a clock tower and a campus town revitalization plan in Ames, Iowa; a recently completed downtown streetscape project in Phoenix, Arizona; and a downtown site selection and master plan for Cathedral City, California. His research work includes survey recording of the Sacramento delta chinatown of Locke, Califor- nia with the Historic American Buildings Sur- vey, and earthquake reconstruction projects in Southern Italy. His articles on urban and street design have been published in Western City and Places. He has taught urban design at the Col- lege of Environmental Design, U.C. Berkeley, and has participated in the Design Programs' Mayor's Institute for City Design in Berkeley and St. Paul. Mr. Tung earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architecture from Yale University and won a Regents Scholarship to the Graduate School of Architecture at the University of California at Berkeley. 31 Appendix 4: List of Participants in the Charrette SSA Participants Jon Barnes, RA Architectural & Engineering Branch Mike Johnson, RA Chief, Architectural & Engineering Branch John Robusto Mechanical Engineer, Architectural & Engineering Branch John Rogoz Structural Engineer, T^chitectural & Engineering Branch Bob Tufano, RA Architectural &C Engineering Branch GSA Participants Dan Bailey, RA Professional Development & Consultation Division, Mid-Atlantic Region Ted Bobrowski Structural Engineer, Group Manager, New River Realty Services District, Mid-Atlantic Region Rob Hewell Director, Portfolio Management Division, Mid-Atlantic Region Kevin Kelly Architect, Design & Construction Division, Central Office Jill K. Shafer, RA Project Manager, Project Services Division, Mid-Atlantic Region SSA Union Representatives Earl Hollenbaugh AFGE Local 1923 Ken Smith AFGE Local 1923 Project Coordinators Nancy Belt Asset Manager, GSA John Bernet Woodlawn Branch Chief, GSA Nancy Hall Asset Manager, GSA Anja Levitties Fine Arts Officer, GSA George Powell Chief Headquarters Project Management Section, SSA NEA Participants Thomas Grooms Program Manager, Federal Design Improvement Program, Design Program Thomas Walton, Ph.D. Rapporteur, School oi Architecture and Planning, The Catholic University of America 32 Pit' ■•'■''